Betevé TV’s “Notícies Vespre” (Evening News) has broadcasted an interview with Jordi Durán, researcher with the Metabolic Engineering and Diabetes Therapy Lab at IRB Barcelona, about research into rare diseases.
This lab carries out research into Lafora disease, a genetic neurodegenerative disorder. “The aim of this work is to explain why neurons degenerate and die. What happens is that glucose, a cellular product accumulates, and this causes the neurons to progressively die, causing neurodegeneration,” says Durán.
Of note, all these discoveries being made about rare diseases can be extrapolated to more common diseases.
The IRB Barcelona scientist received the award during the opening ceremony of the academic year of this institution.
It is estimated that around 400,000 people in Catalonia have a rare disease. In Spain this figure reaches 3 million and in Europe 30 million. In spite of the number of people affected, rare diseases have little visibility. Although promising breakthroughs have been made, these diseases are usually chronic, weakening, and multisystem disorders.
The programme “El Balcó” broadcasted by the radio station Cadena Ser devoted its section called "L'estat de las coses" to rare diseases. They invited Francesc Palau, paediatrician at Sant Joan de Déu Hospital, Isabel Gemio, president of the Fundación Isabel Gemio, and Joan J. Guinovart...
The programme "La Noche de Cope" interviewed Joan J. Guinovart about the bequest of 1.5 million euros donated to IRB Barcelona and that will be devoted to strengthening research into cancer and metastasis.
Link to Cope
The website La Nueva España has echoed the participation of Joan Guinovart, director and researcher at IRB Barcelona, in Science Week in Valdés, Asturias. Guinovart will kick off the event with a talk about diabetes. Science Week will be held from 10 to 15 November.
Link to La Nueva España
The Bulgarian news website Nauka Offnews, among other media outlets, has echoed on the study performed by IRB Barcelona scientists on glycogen synthesis and high glycogen levels in mice.
Published in Cell Metabolism, this work has found that glycogen synthesis does not require a protein called glycogenin, and that high glycogen levels actually impair the performance of muscle during endurance exercise.
Link to Nauka Offnews
Selected media mentions
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A study published in Cell Metabolism by IRB Barcelona scientists turns long-standing assumptions about glycogen biology on their head.
The results may explain the muscular defects of patients with glycogen storage disease XV.
Catalonia's public television channel, TV3, has broadcasted various video abstracts that give scientists the opportunity to explain their research funded by the telethon (La Marató) run by the Catalan TV channel in 2015.
Two IRB Barcelona projects devoted to furthering knowledge of the causes, treatments, prevention and cure of diabetes and obesity are among the 34 awarded by this campaign in 2015.
Antonio Zorzano, coordinator of the Molecular Medicine Programme and leader of the Complex Mtabolic Diseases and Mitochondria Lab, explains his study entitled "Mechanisms responsible for the deficient differentiation capacity of adipose tissue-derived stem cells in obesity"....
On May 13, IRB Barcelona will be holding its Open Day, from 10:00 to 15:00, and almost all the places have been reserved.
Audiences of all ages will visit the laboratories, participate in workshops, and attend informative talks at the Institute, which is located in the Barcelona Science Park.
The May issue of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) journal includes a feature article about the international project on Lafora disease, which involves Joan Guinovart’s group at IRB Barcelona (see here). The US organisation Chelsea’s Hope, a charity formed by families affected by this disease, promoted this international collaboration.
Written by Kim Rice and Matthew S. Gentry...